From Egypt to the present: the history of engagement rings

Back to Egypt

The very first mention of the use of an engagement ring dates back to the times of ancient Egypt, when the Egyptians saw the infinity of the universe in the shape of a ring and a gate in its inner space. This symbolized the moment when the partners would officially become one, both maritally and philosophically. The first official mention of betrothal dates back to around the 1st century BC, when Jews celebrated betrothal in two ceremonies within a year. It is from this that the familiar phrase “within a year and a day” originated.

The first outlines of the concept of the current application are laid in ancient Rome, when the engagement ring was put on the ring finger of the left hand as we know it today. The reason was simple – a vein runs from the ring finger of the left hand directly to the heart, the symbol of love, and it was this biological fact that the engagement ring was meant to literally solidify. The local fiancées were even given two rings. One golden one, which they wore in public, the other stone one for wearing during housework.

First diamonds

In fact, it took several centuries before the current diamond-set ring came into being.In 1477, it was Archduke Maximilian of Austria who gave his bride-to-be Mary of Burgundy her first ever engagement ring. From then on, this royal tradition slowly began to spread, and within a few centuries, the engagement ring had gained a very firm foothold.

The stone itself in the ring represents indestructibility (of the relationship), beauty (of the couple) and eternity (of the relationship). It is precisely because of his indestructibility that a man expresses his willingness to spend the rest of his life with his future wife in a marital union. (In the USA, for example, it is a tradition that the diamond in a ring should be worth three months’ salary of the man who buys it.)

In their early days, however, the first diamond stones on engagement rings did not have it easy. Especially the technical workmanship was of a very low standard and people did not know how to process the stones in such a style that it was at least visually nice. However, at the turn of the 60s. a 70. In the 1800s, when diamond mines were discovered in Africa, everything changed, as the technology to process the stones simply deserved to advance.

Where are you taking him?

An engaged woman wears a ring on the ring finger of her left hand, and when she and her husband are married, the wedding ring goes on that finger. Where does our “fiancé” go after that? There are 3 possible options. He can leave it together with the other ring on the left ring finger, or move it to another finger: the left middle finger or the right ring finger.